Russian Bill Targets Assets of People Discrediting Military

Russia’s lower house of parliament recently passed a bill that would enforce stronger punishments against those who discredit the military.

Under the legislation, the government will have the authority to seize money, valuables, and other assets of people convicted of spreading “deliberately false information” about the country’s armed forces.

It would also target “scoundrels and traitors,” including those who transfer money to enemy forces.

Additionally, the measure would penalize civilians convicted of publicly inciting extremist activities and calling for actions that would hurt the state’s security.

The bill has already been approved by the upper house of parliament and is now awaiting the approval of President Vladimir Putin.

Continuing Crackdown on Dissent

The new Russian legislation is part of the government’s continuing crackdown on dissent since it invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

Moscow already criminalizes “discrediting the armed forces,” “justifying terrorism,” and “spreading fake news” to silence critics.

Many bloggers, activists, and ordinary citizens have been sentenced to long-term imprisonment, including popular writer Dmitry Glukhovsky who was found guilty of “disseminating false information” about the Russian military and was handed an eight-year jail term.

Sasha Skochilenko, an artist and musician, is serving seven years in prison for swapping supermarket price tags with anti-war messages.

Russian blogger Aleksandr Nozdrinov was also arrested last year for posting photos of destroyed buildings in Ukraine and saying Russian troops were responsible.

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